In the last 10 years car seats have been specifically designed to mitigate short and long-term neck injuries caused by rear end impacts. During this period of time, anti-whiplash seat ratings also have been introduced. Recent research have shown rating methods to correlate to real-life performance. The objective of this study was to describe possible characteristics of real-life good performing anti- whiplash seat designs.
To meet the objective, first a real-life data analysis was performed. In total 1111 Folksam and 2630 police reported injuries between 1998 and 2006 were included.
As a result, the redesign of the Saab, Volvo and Toyota seats in the late 90s showed a 50-70% reduction in risk of whiplash symptoms for more than 1 month. Secondly, a rating test series with Saab, Volvo and Toyota seats before and after the anti-whiplash redesign were performed. Also, published rating performances of seats with these designs were analyzed.
As a conclusion, possible characteristics of good performing seats were good performance in dynamic rating tests, especially for the low and medium severity pulses, through designs aimed at reducing head-to-head restraint distance and yielding/energy absorption of the seat.
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